[Jandek] Monkeying around with the Devil's Chord
brobish at yahoo.com
Thu Jun 2 16:55:04 PDT 2005
Thanks for the info on the Devil's Chord. I tried it
out on some easily fingered major chords like E, C and
G and no matter which chord I chose it would amazingly
sound like Jandek -- especially when I'd do a slow
arpeggio sweep followed by a quick strum or two. One
of the genius attributes to a chord like this is that
it is so dissonant that no matter how you sing
something, the melody is automatically harmonized.
As for the "I Threw You Away" era, I liked that
series. But I find that when the harmonica strikes in
I wince because of the tonality of it. Those high
pitched and metallic strafing runs make me uneasy.
Lyrically I like them a lot but I find the delivery to
be on the repetitive side. Perhaps, that's the point.
For some reason, they remind me of a composer named
Charles Ives who worked around the 1800s / 1900s. He
studied music but became an insurance man so that he
didn't have to rely on his compositions for income,
knowing that they were too dissonant for any chance of
financial independence. People hated his stuff but
eventually, many years later, he actually won a
Pulitzer Prize for a symphony called "The Camp
Meeting." Not that Jandek's getting any prizes other
than an actual audience but the point is that this
other guy scorned people who couldn't handle
dissonance because they could not see the point. I
guess that I find Jandek's older series more subdued
in delivery and kind of trying to harmonize with the
guitar with lyrics that are more story-like. The "I
Threw You Away" series seems to be performed in a more
belted out way (almost yelping at times) with
introspective type lyrics in a setting rather than a
plot. The music and lyrics seem to be a give and
take, push/pull style when the older stuff is a
constant overlapping of one another. Those are what I
see to be their differences. I loved “The Place”
The idea of a Jandek cover band is funny. They are
all the rage these days though... Shoot in the area
here there are all kinds: Kiss, Van Halen, AC/DC,
Neil Diamond, etc... I could imagine a Jandek cover
band eventually coming up with original material and
then using that to open for Jandek. I could see that.
It's not too far-fetched. Any monkeys might fly out
of my butt.
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